- Robert D. Hume
(b Hereford, Feb 19, 1717; d London, Jan 20, 1779). English actor, manager and playwright. He was the greatest Shakespearean actor of the mid-18th century and an influential manager of Drury Lane from 1747 to his retirement in 1776. He was also knowledgeable about ballet and opera. In 1749 he married the dancer Eva Maria Veigel, who had come to London in March 1746. Garrick visited Paris and established contact with such figures as Noverre, the pyrotechnist Morel Torré, the violinist-composer F.H. Barthélemon (who provided music for Garrick’s burletta Orpheus) and J.P. de Loutherbourg, who revolutionized stage design at Drury Lane in the 1770s. Garrick’s relatively ‘naturalistic’ acting style – he broke with the pompous declamatory styles in fashion since Dryden’s day – made him an important influence on such theatrical and operatic reformers as Algarotti, Diderot and Noverre. He is said to have taught his acting style to Guadagni, who was to be Gluck’s Orpheus (...